MOUNT VERNON — After years of waiting and a recent delay, the new Skagit Valley Family YMCA facility opened Wednesday for members.

About 100 people lined up ahead of the noon opening at the $24 million, 60,000-square-foot building off Hoag Road.

“It’s exciting to see how ready the community is for a new Y,” said Dean Snider, CEO of the Skagit YMCA. “We’re ready to go.”

The building, which broke ground in 2017, has two swimming pools, modern exercise equipment and a gym with space for an NCAA-sized basketball court.

Robert Helton, a 20-year member of the YMCA, was first in line when doors opened Wednesday.

“I joined the week after I moved here,” he said. This (new YMCA) will be a great thing for Mount Vernon.”

Helton said he’s been eagerly awaiting the new facility, saying the old Fulton Street location, built in 1941, wasn’t holding up well.

“We had to put up with a lack of showerheads (in the men’s locker room) for a year and a half,” he said.

With the opening of the new facility, services at the Fulton Street building have ended, Snider said.

He said only YMCA members are allowed to use the new facility until April 12, at which point others will be able to pay for a day pass.

— Reporter Brandon Stone: bstone@skagitpublishing.com, 360-416-2112, Twitter: @Brandon_SVH

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